Physicians, Nurses and Physical Therapists are aware of the benefits of early, frequent and safe patient ambulation. The physiological benefits for the patient include improved functional mobility, muscle strength, and a reduced duration of mechanical ventilation as well as avoiding common complications related to immobility.
Those peripheral ailments include:
• Urinary Tract Infections
• Bowel Obstructions
• Deep Vein Thrombosis
• Pressure Ulcers
• Intensive Care Unit Acquired Weakness
Immobility may also contribute to various levels of depression.
The Obstacles to Frequent, Safe Patient Ambulation
Frequent ambulation may reduce patient recovery time, Length of Stay (LOS) and costs associated with those peripheral ailments mentioned above. In addition the incidence of hospital readmissions may be reduced.
Stated simply patient ambulation can benefit the patient, caregiver and medical facility in terms of outcomes and costs. The problem is obstacles exist that prevent or hamper frequent ambulation.